Several weeks back Mazda announced it would return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year, showcasing its 787B race car, which took the overall win back in 1991.
Now the Japanese automaker has announced that driving the car will be done other than McDreamy himself, Grey’s Anatomy star Patrick Dempsey. While best known for his acting, Dempsey is more than just a gentleman racer having competed in motorsports for years and even founding his own racing team. While rumor is his Grey’s days are over, perhaps he should look to a full time career in motorsports, after his third place finish at this year’s 24 Hours of Daytona showed just how skilled behind the wheel he is. Dempsey will squeeze the “at speed” laps into his schedule, racing his Dempsey Racing Mazda RX-8 at Watkins Glen the week before, and then heading to Watkins Glen for the next round of the Grand-Am series.
“I’ve been a member of the Mazdaspeed family since 2007,” said Dempsey. “I race a three-rotor RX-8 in Grand-Am GT competition, and Mazda allowed me to drive the amazing RX-792P at Mazda Raceway last year. I love the heritage of the sport, and to be given the chance to drive THE car that scored the highest-visibility win in Mazda’s storied racing history is indeed an honor.”
With that win back in 1991 Mazda became the first Japanese automaker to win outright at Le Mans, a record Honda, Toyota or Nissan have yet to match.
In addition, Johnny Herbert, who helped drive the 787B to victory in 1991 will also take laps in the 700-hp four-rotor race car.